Date posted: January 17, 2014
It has become clearer that the Recep Tayyip Erdoğan government will do whatever it takes to stop a judicial investigation into graft, corruption and sleaze. About 3,000 police officers, also acting as legal enforcement officers by law since the government has not yet formed a separate enforcement unit, have been removed from their posts without any reason.
Some officers have been relocated five times in the last month. Twenty prosecutors have also been removed as a result of the justice minister’s pressure. Now, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) is working on a new bill that will virtually attach the judiciary to the justice minister, who will be able to remove prosecutors and punish them. Instead of letting the judiciary do its job and focus on the judicial evidence and prove them wrong, Erdoğan and his media want us to focus only on an alleged international conspiracy comprised of the US, the EU, the Jewish lobby, Israel and even Lufthansa, which is allegedly very jealous of Turkish Airlines (THY)!
Last weekend several AKP deputies visited some European countries and tried to convince the Turkish diaspora that the corruption investigations are Gezi-type plots by these dark forces. One of them, Mr. Mehmet Metiner, cited the only imprisoned National Intelligence Organization (MİT) agent in the Ergenekon case. According to Metiner, the US, the EU, the Jewish lobby and Israel will launch an attack against the AKP and Metiner told those Turks that the MİT agent’s prophecy has now come true with these corruption cases.
It is impossible to reason with AKP politicians or Erdoğan’s advisors who have a similar mindset to Mr. Metiner. As I wrote here a few days ago, in the words of former Interior Minister İdris Naim Şahin, a small oligarchic staff comprising politicians and bureaucrats, whose intentions are uncertain, are now very influential within the party and the government. But we also know that many AKP deputies are upset with the performance of the narrow oligarchic clique. Thus, I am not addressing this oligarchy clique or their staunch supporters within the government, the AKP and the media. I hope that the concerned and reasonable majority of the party will pay attention to what is being said here.
First, it is the party’s right to defend its members’ innocence in the graft cases. But in democracies, this is done by trusting the judiciary and asking prosecutors to prove their cases based on sound concrete evidence. This, of course, takes time. But if the AKP and the suspects remain calm and reasonable, they will have a better chance of convincing the public about such accusations, especially if these accusations are groundless.
Second, we must also talk about the AKP’s accusations against the judiciary and the police. This can also be done by remaining calm and reasonable. The AKP must present its concrete evidence and sound arguments, showing that some police officers, prosecutors and judges had acted illegally, fabricated evidence, staged a plot against the government and received orders from the Hizmet movement while doing their jobs. Then, all sorts of judicial investigations must be launched against these suspects. Erdoğan should even share the evidence with the media.
Third, as Hizmet’s Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV) reiterated last month, the AKP must, as soon as possible, start working towards EU reforms, the establishment of a fully democratic Turkey, the establishment of the rule of law, the most advanced fundamental rights and freedoms, equality of all before the law, a civilian constitution and a transparent state that can be held accountable. Since, as the GYV stated, the greatest obstacle before the emergence of a parallel state or uncontrollable cliques which seize the state is a full democratic and transparent state according to EU standards which is governed by the supremacy and rule of law and is held accountable to Parliament, the judiciary, the Court of Accounts, the media and the general public.
If, instead of doing all these, the AKP government keeps reassigning the police and prosecutors without any concrete accusation based on evidence, it will give the impression that some of these AKP politicians are indeed guilty.
Source: Todays Zaman , January 17, 2014
Tags: Democracy | Freedoms | Journalists and Writers Foundation | Turkey |